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Obituary: Robert Louis "Bob" Adamson - Educational Leader & Friend of Athletic Network - 11/27/2018

Robert Louis Adamson
Robert Louis Adamson Obituary

Lafayette - Robert Louis Adamson, a longtime Lafayette educator who brought a sunny disposition to a life filled high with cooking, hunting and fishing, storytelling, and enjoying time with his beloved wife and family, died on November 27, 2018. He was 82.

Friend to prince and pauper alike, "Coach" or "Mr. Bob," as he was widely known, was born in Pineville, Louisiana to Clyde and Marion Adamson, who predeceased him. A 1954 graduate of Menard Memorial High School in Alexandria, he received his undergraduate degree in Social Studies at Southwestern Louisiana Institute (SLI) in 1959. He later completed his Master's degree in Education and an Educational Specialist degree at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

Bob met his future wife, Buttons Veazey, at SLI. They celebrated 61 years of marriage this year.

Bob focused his career in education on helping students to excel, athletic programs to flourish, and teachers to succeed. Some of his most enjoyable years were spent as head basketball coach at Teurlings, Fatima, Scott, and Lafayette High School (LHS). His Fatima basketball team reached the state quarterfinals in 1964 and his 1969 LHS team played for the state championship. Adamson moved from the athletic department to the administrative team at LHS in 1969. He served as principal at LHS from 1973 to 1984 and subsequently was principal at Judice Middle School from 1983-1995. Teachers who worked with him commented on "the respect, unfailing sense of humor, and balanced perspective he brought to the fore."

Throughout his career, Adamson received numerous awards and was active in state education circles. He served as president of the Louisiana Association of Principals, president of the Lafayette Parish and Acadiana Principals' Association, and was active in the National Association of Secondary School Principals. In addition, he served as President of the Lafayette and Louisiana High School Literary Rally Associations. He was a Louisiana Parent Teacher Association Principal of the Year and was named Junior High Principal of the Year in Louisiana in 1990-91.

In the 1970s Bob lead the Acadian Chapter of the Lions Club International as its President.

After he retired from education, Adamson chipped away at a "bucket list" of travel destinations with Buttons. He worked as Group Sales Manager at the Cajundome. He also enjoyed playing bridge and was a regular competitor at the Rose House.

An avid sports fan, Adamson helped to bring the Top 28 Tournament, a showcase for statewide high school basketball talent, to Lafayette. As a diehard supporter of the Ragin Cajuns, Bob followed his alma mater closely in every sport.

Although a transplant to South Louisiana, Bob embraced his new hometown and Cajun culture with gusto. He loved hunting and fishing, especially on Pecan Island, where he spent many memorable times at his Crooked Barrel Lodge. Adamson and his brother-in-law Will Verret constructed a 9-hole golf course called Goose Acres on Pecan Island in the 1980s. While crowds never materialized, the course drew attention for the alligators that liked to lie out on the greens.

Bob was widely known as an excellent Cajun cook whose culinary skills and joie de vivre led him to participate in two large social groups, the Southside Supper Club and the Retired Principals Supper Club. Bob relished collecting recipes from a wide variety of sources and won local cooking awards.

To those blessed to have shared a beverage with him, Bob was a natural born raconteur. He loved sharing his latest joke with the people he encountered, whether they were cashiers at the grocery store or physicians attending to his health. Staffers at his oncology center took to calling him "Robert Redford." To the very end, the twinkle in his eye stayed strong.

Bob battled cancer for 19 years with an intensely optimistic outlook. In the midst of some of his treatments, his answering machine said, "If you're having as good a day as I am, you can leave a message!"

Adamson's survivors include his cherished wife, Buttons; his daughters, Dawn (Chuck) Dobie and Taina Adamson; and his son, Lance (Vanessa) Adamson. Surviving grandchildren, who called him Pawpaw are Sevie (Steven) Zeller, Ellen (Yoni) Dobie-Geffen, Aaron Dobie, Brock Adamson, Avery Adamson, and Camryn Adamson. Four great grandchildren (Grayson, Kiah, Ani, and Rose) will miss Pawpaw quacking like a duck.

Pallbearers will be Keith Verret, Oran Toce, Richard Poche, Jim Zehnder, Larry Aucoin, Jim Shields and John Shields.

The family would like to thank Dr. Gene Brierre, Eric Buller, PA, Dr. Thomas Voitier II, Dr. Michael DiLeo and the many other physicians and health care providers who helped Bob throughout the years. They also pay special tribute to the Bob's caregivers: Debbie Bennet, Gurtha Pelletier, Anthonesia Etienne, Venessa Landry, and LaVerne Labbe.

Memorial gifts can be made to Hospice of Acadiana.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Jules Catholic Church on Saturday, December 1, 2018 at 11:00am with Fr. Dan Edwards to conduct the funeral service. Burial will follow at Lafayette Memorial Park.

Visitation will be held on Friday, November 30, 2018 from 3:00pm until 8:00pm with a recitation of the rosary at 7:00pm. Visitation will continue on Saturday from 9:00am until the time of the service.

Personal condolences may be sent to the Adamson family at www.delhommefuneralhome.com.

Delhomme Funeral Home, 1011 Bertrand Drive, Lafayette, LA is in charge of funeral arrangements.
Published in the The Advertiser on Nov. 28, 2018 Athletic Network Footnote by Dr. Ed Dugas.

Our paths first crossed in the late 1950s in Dutch Reinhardt's office in Long Gym and we became life-long friends, sharing community and professional experiences. Always a champion at the task at hand, Bob was highly recognized as the image of the tournament while serving as a "Blue Coat" when the Top 28 was brought to Lafayette by Gerald Hebert.

Bob filled for me when I was unable to attend several major organizational meetings as Chair of the College of Education Academic Showcase Month which was leading up to the University Centennial Celebration.  Although called in at the last minute Bob's leadership provided for meeting outcomes which exceeded expectations.  After returning with my young grandchild who had been seriously ill, I met with Bob to  receive reports on the meetings. It was then I realized what a beautiful job he had done. Others had informed me on the what, but Bob told me about how and why. It was hilarious to listen to him recount those events. Later I was to learn that the successes we may have enjoyed with the Academic Showcase were primarily due to his involvement and leadership.  

Please click here  -  scroll down and click on letter "A" - then Adamson for his letter.
 Click here for Bob's Athletic Network Profile.

Click here for the College of Education Academic Showcase videos and Book of Letters.  

The Athletic Network extends condolences to his family and friends.  RIP, Bob, for living such an exemplary life.